I have been lucky enough to be part of the Geollect team for 3-weeks as their first ‘Geointern’ before going into my third year at the University of Exeter, studying BSc Geography with Applied GIS. With much of my degree focussing on environmental applications of GIS, I started the internship rather uneducated in the maritime sector and was oblivious to its scope for improvement through GIS to help the industries work more efficiently and sustainably. I was keen to be able to apply the GIS skills learnt from my degree to different sectors within the work place, to discover and implement the diverse possibilities for GIS applications beyond my degree’s discipline.
The main project I worked on looked at the tracks of past hurricanes on the East Coast of America and the Gulf of Mexico. I studied the tracks and looked at how they overlap with the US’s major ports in these regions, such as Ports of New Orleans, Miami and The Everglades. I used open-source information to find the ports’ information such as its terminals, operators, types of cranes, berths and fence lines. I displayed risk analysis on ArcGIS Web AppBuilder to show the intersection of historical hurricane tracks and major trading and commercial ports. This is valuable information for insurance companies who are thus able to adjust the port’s insurance premiums. This is a prime example of where I have been able to apply my GIS expertise focussed on geographical acquired at university to real world applications. I used ArcGIS Pro software, an updated version to ArcMap which I have previously used as well as an array of online tools and ESRI City Engine to create 3D maps of the ports.
A highlight of my internship was when Geollect were hired for the day to investigate the location of a pirated ship on the West coast of Africa. Using satellite data, we were able to disprove other hypotheses previously made about the ship’s location, filter Twitter data so we were notified of any newsfeed updates and georeference maps to look at the bathymetry of the port to determine where the ship would be able to travel with its draught.
I also spent time looking at the newly available Sentinel 5p data, to identify the main shipping routes from high NO2 levels and investigated different ways Geollect will be able to implement this recently released data into their future projects. Prior to my internship, I was ignorant to the vast quantity of open-source information and data, and the potential to create vast analyses through the utilisation of such data. I was also able to observe a conference with potential customers in Zambia through a webinar explaining the potential products Geollect can tailor for smart farming and agriculture.
The huge potential of Geollect in the geospatial industry is clearly driven by the motivated, passionate and knowledgeable employees to create bespoke products for efficiency and sustainability across numerous sectors. It has been a pleasure to feel so welcomed into the Geollect team; I have loved the friendliness and humour of the team and the fast-paced and dynamic nature of Geollect as a start-up company. Despite being an intern, the open nature of the team meant I felt comfortable inputting suggestions to the whole team and felt confident contributing to every project I was given. I greatly appreciated their flexibility and contemporary, realistic outlook on everyone’s working hours and place of work, with working hours suited to each individual’s needs. I hope to work with Geollect in the future and look forward to seeing their progress within the Geospatial industry in the near future. I wish the best of luck to the team and to Dave and Ryan who are lucky enough to soon be joining the Geollect team.
Linkedin: Nicola Clift